Economics at your fingertips  

The euroization of bank deposits in Eastern Europe

Martin Brown () and Helmut Stix ()

Economic Policy, 2015, vol. 30, issue 81, 95-139

Abstract: In Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe a substantial share of bank deposits are denominated in foreign currency. Deposit euroization poses key challenges for monetary policy and financial sector supervision. On the one hand, it limits the effectiveness of monetary policy interventions. On the other hand, it increases financial sector fragility by exposing banks to currency risk or currency-induced credit risk. Policymakers disagree on whether countries in the region should tackle deposit euroization with ‘dedollarization’ policies or should rather strive to adopt the Euro as their legal tender. Assessing the potential effectiveness of ‘dedollarization’ policies requires a clear understanding of which households hold foreign currency deposits and why they do so. On the basis of survey data covering 16,375 households in ten countries in 2011 and 2012, we provide a comprehensive household-level analysis of deposit euroization in Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe. We examine how households’ preferences for, and holding of, foreign currency deposits are related to individual expectations about monetary conditions and network effects. We also examine to what extent monetary expectations and deposit euroization are the legacy of past financial crises or the outflow of current policies and institutions in the region. Our findings suggest that deposit euroization in Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe can be partly tackled by prudent monetary and economic decisions by today’s policymakers. The preferences of households for Euro deposits are partly driven by their distrust in the stability of their domestic currency, which in turn is related to their assessment of current policies and institutions. However, our findings also suggest that a stable monetary policy may not be sufficient to deal with the hysteresis of deposit euroization across the region. First, we confirm that the holding of foreign currency deposits has become a ‘habit’ in the region. Second, we find that deposit euroization is still strongly influenced by households’ experiences of financial crises in the 1990s. Our findings question the effectiveness of supply side interventions (e.g. bank regulation) or demand side interventions (e.g. local currency capital market development) in de-euroizing household savings. First, we show that deposit euroization is largely demand driven. Second, we show that households already have access to a broad range of savings products in local currency.

Date: 2015
References: Add references at CitEc
Citations: View citations in EconPapers (17) Track citations by RSS feed

Downloads: (external link) (application/pdf)
Access to full text is restricted to subscribers.

Related works:
Working Paper: The Euroization of Bank Deposits in Eastern Europe (2014) Downloads
Working Paper: The Euroization of Bank Deposits in Eastern Europe (2014) Downloads
This item may be available elsewhere in EconPapers: Search for items with the same title.

Export reference: BibTeX RIS (EndNote, ProCite, RefMan) HTML/Text

Persistent link:

Access Statistics for this article

More articles in Economic Policy from CEPR Contact information at EDIRC., CES Contact information at EDIRC., MSH Contact information at EDIRC.
Bibliographic data for series maintained by Oxford University Press ().

Page updated 2020-02-26
Handle: RePEc:oup:ecpoli:v:30:y:2015:i:81:p:95-139.